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In All Souls, a visiting Spanish lecturer, viewing Oxford through a prismatic detachment, is alternately amused, puzzled, delighted, and disgusted by its vagaries of human vanity. A bit lonely, with few classes to teach and a charming but elusive married mistress, he casts about for activity.Yet so much goes into simply “being” at Oxford: friendship, opinion-mongering, one-upmanship, finicky exchanges of favors, gossip, adultery, book-collecting, back-patting, backstabbing. Javier Marías demonstrates a sweet tooth for eccentricity in this sly campus novel and love story.
“A dazzling example of the Oxford novel, with all the deceptively innocent wit and humour and rueful nostalgia we could want.” – The Times Literary Supplement (London)
“Probably the wittiest novel set in British academia since David Lodge wrote Changing Places.” –Daily Mail (London)